Reporting With Sensitivity

1 Feb

This is a more serious post, about an extremely important topic.

This past week, I have been working on a sensitive article for the school newspaper. This article has involved me being pricy to private and sensitive information about other people, long discussions with numerous school officials, and phone calls with universities across the country. I even walked into class half an hour late because I was interviewing for this article. I have worked with people on these kinds of articles before, but I have never written one myself.

It seemed that every interview I had resulted in two more that I needed to make time for. I had to triple-check that sources were, indeed, okay with their stories being shared. While writing the article, I had to constantly be careful to point out whose opinion a statement was, or how I obtained an anonymous quote.

This is probably the most well-researched article I have ever written. As I was typing it onto the page, the facts and quotes flowed from a wide variety of sources. Over the course of the past few weeks, I have become an expert on this topic and am able to answer almost any question a person may ask about its role at my university.

If done wrong, this article could have resulted in a huge amount of negativity from many people. That’s scary. It’s scary to know that people are trusting you to get accurate information to thousands of people regarding a serious topic. It’s scary to know that there could be serious, real-world repercussions for getting it wrong. But it also feels really, really good. It feels like something that can really make a difference, and get people talking about the right things.

I’m proud to have put together this piece, much prouder than I’ve been of anything else I’ve written before. I only hope it matters a little tiny bit to the community that I work for.


One Response to “Reporting With Sensitivity”

  1. Erin February 1, 2012 at 4:34 pm #

    now I really want to read this article!

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